Tenn. native brings son to local barber shop 32 years after his dad brought him

·4 min read

Jun. 25—GOSHEN — In 1990, Doug's Sports Cut, a sports-themed barber shop in Goshen that also has sports memorabilia, was featured in an article in the magazine Sports Illustrated.

The shop instantly became a destination for sports fans to come visit, making owner Doug Shaffer one of the more popular barbers in the country.

Two of the people that visited him once the story came out was Reed Finlay and his son, Doug. The father-son duo from Chattanooga, Tennessee, were on a road trip across the Midwest, seeing all of the baseball ballparks. Since Goshen was on their way in the journey, they decided to stop and visit the unique hair stylist shop, even taking a picture with Shaffer to commemorate the experience.

Thirty-two years later, that son took his own son to visit Shaffer and the iconic barber shop.

Doug Finlay, 46, brought his son, also named Reed, 12, Saturday to Doug's Sports Cut. Doug Finlay is on a week-long baseball trip across the Midwest with his son, just like how he and his dad did back in 1990.

After a stop in Cleveland Friday night, the duo was heading to Chicago Saturday to catch a White Sox game. Since Goshen is on the drive from Cleveland to Chicago, Finlay decided to make a stop at the barber shop his dad brought him to more than three decades ago.

"I honestly don't remember being here, other than coming," said Doug Finlay when asked if he had any memories of his first trip to Doug's Sports Cut. "I remember that we came here, but I don't remember anything specific. We took the picture, and it obviously looks quite the same."

Last summer, Doug Finlay and his son visited two different parks: PNC Park in Pittsburgh and Great American Ballpark in Cincinnati.

This year's journey is more robust, as they will end up seeing six different ballparks in six days. After going to Progressive Field Friday and Guaranteed Rate Field Saturday, Doug and Reed will make the pilgrimage up to Milwaukee Sunday to see American Family Field, home of the Brewers.

After visiting Milwaukee, the father and son will swing through Dyersville, Iowa to visit the "Field of Dreams" field, made popular from the 1989 movie of the same name.

Monday will be a visit to Kauffman Field in Kansas City to see the Royals. Tuesday will bring them to Busch Stadium in St. Louis for a Cardinals game. They'll then return to Chicago Wednesday and see the other team from that city, the Cubs, at Wrigley Field. The Finlay's will then return to their Chattanooga home Thursday.

"The whole trip makes me think of my dad," said Doug Finlay, whose father passed away in 2012. "It was something that we did that was really special. I think about it often, and I wanted (my son, Reed) to have a similar experience."

There's one ballpark in particular that the younger Finlay is excited to visit.

"Wrigley's pretty cool because of the wall," Reed Finlay said.

Doug Finlay said the week-long road trip happened almost by accident.

"This summer, we weren't going to do anything, but then (Reed) broke his arm on May 15," Doug Finlay said. "So, he couldn't go to camp and he couldn't swim, so I was like, 'I want to do something good with you.' So, we're doing this trip."

While the stop into Doug's Sports Cut for the Finlay's only lasted about 20 minutes, being able to have that type of interaction meant a lot to the 68-year-old owner.

"It reminds of the kids that I cut (their hair) 30 years ago and have grown up to be a man, and they're now bringing their kids in for a haircut," Shaffer said. "But I've never had anybody who's visited me as a kid, to where they're now grown up and they bring their kid in. That's really cool."

Austin Hough can be reached at austin.hough@goshennews.com or at 574-538-2360. Follow him on Twitter at @AustinHoughTGN.